“We write poems as leaves give oxygen – so we can breathe.”
“You are always naked when you start writing; you are always as if you had never written anything before; you are always a beginner. Shakespeare wrote without knowing he would become Shakespeare.”
“I never became a writer for the money. I am a poet first. Even getting published is a miracle for poets.”
“What are the sources of poetry? Love and death and the paradox of love and death. All poetry from the beginning is about Eros and Thanatos. Those are the only subjects. And how Eros and Thanatos interweave.”
“Critics write out of intellectual exercise, not poets. Poets write straight from the heart.”
“If you imagine the world listening, you’ll never write a line. That’s why privacy is so important. You should write first drafts as if they will never be shown to anyone.”
“Nothing you write is ever lost to you. At some other level your mind is working on it.”
“It takes a spasm of love to write a poem.”
“What makes you a poet is a gift for language, an ability to see into the heart of things, and an ability to deal with important unconscious material. When all these things come together, you’re a poet. But there isn’t one little gimmick that makes you a poet. There isn’t any formula for it.”
“Poetry . . . comes blood-warm straight out of the unconscious.”
Published by Paul Szlosek
Paul Szlosek was born in Southbridge, Massachusetts, but currently resides in the nearby metropolis of Worcester. He was co-founder and host of the long-running Poet’s Parlor poetry reading in Southbridge and Sturbridge, as well as a past recipient of the Jacob Knight Award for Poetry. His poems have appeared in various local publications including the Worcester Review, Worcester Magazine, Sahara, Concrete Wolf, and Diner. He’s probably best known in the Worcester poetry community for his fanatical obsession with obscure poetry forms, and has invented his own including the ziggurat, the streetbeatina, and (most recently) the hodgenelle.
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8 thoughts on “10 Great Quotes About Poets, Poetry, and Writing by Erica Jong”
Her quotes are just a beautiful as her poetry. Her gift defies form. Great post, Paul!
Thank you so much, Brad! I definitely agree! it is funny that it seems a lot of people aren’t even aware that Erica Jong is a poet (and a very talented one at that) only knowing her as the author of Fear of Flying.
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A way to common failure, Paul! Thanks for shedding some light!
That’s the most insightful set of “10 Great Quotes” that I’ve seen so far!
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Thank you so much, Robin! I really appreciate hearing that. I personally get so much out of the quotes by these poets aboiut their craft.😊
These are fabulous!!
Thank you so much, Rhen!I am so pleased you like them.😊
You’re most welcome–hope you are staying well! Blessings to you 🙂